Wednesday’s lineups: Tigers vs. Nationals
The Tigers sat Miguel Cabrera out of their starting lineup Wednesday as he recuperated from the left abdominal strain he aggravated Tuesday night.
Cabrera told MLB.com Wednesday morning that he was feeling better than he did Tuesday night, when he had to leave the game against the Nationals in the eighth inning. By sitting him ahead of Thursday’s scheduled off-day, however, the Tigers give him two days of rest to get him ready for their divisional clash with the White Sox beginning Friday night at Comerica Park.
Cabrera has been dealing with aches and pains for about a month, from a left hip flexor and sore back to the abdominal. The injuries seemingly cooled Cabrera a bit from the torrid pace of the season’s first three months.
The abdominal strain is something that shouldn’t keep Cabrera off the field long-term, but might force him to miss a day here and there when he aggravates it. Moving side to side shouldn’t be a problem, but charging in and running at full speed — as he did on Chad Tracy’s infield grounder Tuesday — could.
“It’s the type of thing that’s something he’s going to feel, and as long as he’s able to work through that, he’s OK,” Rand said. “If he can’t, he’ll take a breather.”
Assuming Cabrera doesn’t pinch-hit Wednesday, he’ll finish July batting .288 for the month with seven home runs and 17 RBIs. He continues to lead the Majors with a .359 average on the season, while his 99 RBIs had him tied with Baltimore’s Chris Davis. Cabrera’s 32 home runs rank second behind Davis.
In all three categories, Cabrera is actually topping his pace from his Triple Crown numbers last year. Whether he can keep on that pace at less than full strength will be a saga to follow over the final two months of the season.
Ramon Santiago, who moved over from second base to replace Cabrera at third Tuesday night, started in his place Wednesday against Nationals left-hander Gio Gonzalez. Jose Iglesias, acquired late Tuesday night in a three-way trade from Boston for Avisail Garcia and Brayan Villarreal, has shown he can play third well. His availability there, however, depends on Jhonny Peralta’s status once Major League Baseball completes its Biogenesis investigation.
TIGERS (career numbers vs. Gio Gonzalez)
- Austin Jackson, CF (0-for-6, walk, 2 K’s)
- Torii Hunter, RF (3-for-13, HR, walk, 3 K’s)
- Matt Tuiasosopo, LF (1-1, HR)
- Prince Fielder, 1B (3-for-8, walk)
- Victor Martinez, DH (9-for-26, HR, 3 walks, 6 K’s)
- Jhonny Peralta, SS (8-for-27, 2 walks, 6 K’s)
- Hernan Perez, 2B
- Ramon Santiago, 3B (1-for-2)
- Alex Avila, C
P: Justin Verlander
NATIONALS (career numbers off Verlander)
- Denard Span, CF (15-for-42, 3 K’s)
- Bryce Harper, RF
- Ryan Zimmerman, DH (0-for-3, 2 K’s)
- Jayson Werth, RF
- Adam LaRoche, 1B
- Ian Desmond, SS (0-for-2, K)
- Anthony Rendon, 2B
- Kurt Suzuki, C (6-for-23, walk, 3 K’s)
- Steve Lombardozzi, 2B
P: Gio Gonzalez